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All About the Durational Shortage Area Permit

With a DSAP, you can start teaching right away, finish your teacher certification and earn a salary — at the same time.

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Now more than ever, Connecticut needs great teachers. And if you have a bachelor’s degree, you may be able to start teaching right away with a Durational Shortage Area Permit.

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What is a Durational Shortage Area Permit?

In a nutshell, a Durational Shortage Area Permit, or DSAP, is a special permit that lets you teach in your own classroom and earn a salary, while you finish your teacher certification. 

How does a DSAP work?

To get your DSAP, you’ll need to enroll in a teaching program, then secure a job as a “teacher of record” (a.k.a. classroom teacher) in a school. You’ll take coursework outside of school hours and implement what you’ve learned in your classroom during the day.

At the end of your program, you’ll be a fully certified teacher!

You can learn more at the Connecticut State Department of Education’s (CSDE) Resources for Districts page

Who should consider teaching with a DSAP? 

A DSAP could be a good option if you’re changing careers, have experience with students (such as a paraprofessional or substitute teacher role) or have a bachelor’s degree in a subject closely related to what you want to teach.

Are you a school staff member? Our School Staff page has more information and resources just for you! 

Like the name “Durational Shortage Area Permit” implies, the DSAP is meant to cover subjects that have a high need for teachers. Your teaching subject doesn’t need to be a state-designated shortage area, but it must be a high-need area in your hiring school district. Contact individual school districts to find out what subjects they consider high-need.

How can I get a DSAP?

There are a few steps to teaching with a DSAP — and lots of resources to help! Let’s take a look.
  1. 1

    Make sure you’re eligible.

    Before you begin the process for a DSAP, you’ll need to meet a few requirements. You should:

    • Have a bachelor’s degree.
    • Have at least 12 credits (about 3–4 classes) in your teaching subject area (or a closely related subject).
    • Plan to teach a subject that is a state-designated shortage area or a high-need subject in your hiring school district. Check with the school districts where you’re interested in working to find out what subjects they consider high-need. 
    • Be new to teaching. If you already have teaching experience, the CSDE has other resources to help you get your Connecticut teacher certification. For example, you may be able to transfer a teacher certification from another state or get certified based on experience. You can learn more at the CSDE’s Becoming Certified and Certification FAQ pages!
  2. 2

    Decide what you want to teach, and choose your certification endorsement area.

    Your certification endorsement area will depend on the subject and grade level you want to teach. The TEACH Connecticut Certification Guide has more information about your options! 

  3. 3

    Apply to a teaching program and enroll.

    When you’re looking at teaching programs, you can choose either a standard or an alternate certification program. In a standard program, you’ll earn college credits or a degree. Alternate certification programs do not offer credits or degrees, but they’re usually faster and less expensive than a standard program. The FAQs below have more information about each of these options!

    You can find both standard and alternate certification programs with the TEACH Connecticut Program Explorer. The TEACH Connecticut Application Guide and application checklists can help you apply. 

    Not all teaching programs work with DSAP candidates! Before you commit, make sure to confirm that your program will support a DSAP. 

  4. 4

    Apply for teaching jobs in a Connecticut school district.

    You can look for open positions on educator job boards. To start, we recommend the Connecticut REAP and Connecticut Education Association websites. 

    The job postings you see will list a teacher certification as a requirement. That’s okay! Just make sure to say in your application that you’re interested in a DSAP. 

    Visit our Resume Guide for tips to craft your resume, plus a free downloadable template! 

  5. 5

    Your teaching program and hiring school district will apply for a DSAP on your behalf.

    Once you’ve enrolled in a program and you have a job offer, your teaching program and employer will work with you to fill out your DSAP application. Your school district will submit the application to the CSDE on your behalf. 

  6. 6

    The CSDE will review your application.

    Almost there! Your school district will let you know once your DSAP has been approved.

    If your DSAP won’t be finalized before your teaching assignment starts, your school district can also apply for a substitute authorization on your behalf. This lets you start teaching while you wait for your DSAP. 

  7. 7

    Start teaching!

    Once you have your DSAP, you’re ready to step into the classroom and begin your journey.

Frequently Asked Questions

Talk to a coach

Have more questions? A TEACH Connecticut coach can help you decide if a DSAP is the right path for you. Set up a 1:1 coaching session for free!